Set Your Holiday Punch on Fire, Charles Dickens Style

A cheek-warming mix of cognac, rum, citrus, sugar, black tea ... and fire.

There are few things that are more Dickensian than a bowl of punch. A great lover of drink, Dickens wove spirits into his writing repeatedly and even conceived of his own punch, whose recipe he included in a letter to a friend, writing that it might make her “for ninety years…a beautiful Punchmaker in more senses than one.” A cheek-warming mix of cognac, rum, citrus and sugar, Dickens required this recipe to “cook” by setting the spirit mix on fire. We urge you to take care with this step to avoid any singed eyebrows. (Adapted from David Wondrich’s Punch.)